November 23, 2016 15:17 ET

The Newest Magical, Creative & Educational Gifts for the Family

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - Nov 23, 2016) - Technology editor and founder of, James Oppenheim, shares his holiday picks for 2016.

Cozmo from Anki ($179) is real life robot packed with artificial intelligence and an adorable personality. The little 'droid is packed with sensors and a camera that help him navigate the world. He has adorable, expressive blue eyes and speaks the child's name with a voice that will make his companion's heart melt. Like a happy puppy he loves to play games, but the real magic is in the emotional bond that people and Cozmo will build.

Skylanders Imaginators ($59.99 for start set) is a great game to play with the kids. Power up the video game with toy action figures that make for creative play, on-screen and off. New this year, kids can design their own characters: how they look, sound, and play. Parents love this because it brings creativity to gaming. And, get this: parents can order their child's creations on t-shirts and as 3d fully-playable figures.

Portal ($199) is the fastest wireless router has tested; it's also the slickest looking. All 9 antennas are hidden so it looks great in any room. One of the reasons internet may be so slow is that neighbors are fighting for the same wireless pathways, so it can be like data coming and going is stuck in traffic. Portal uses frequencies none of the neighbors are on, so streaming movies and music are delivered blazing fast. It can be managed, including parental controls, from your smartphone.

Wonder Workshop's Dash ($149) and Dot (sold separately or bundled) are programmable smartphone-controlled robots for kids. Start by customizing and driving Dash around the house. The real fun (and learning) begins when kids develop programming skills by gaming with the robots in the free apps. The perfect STEM toy, Dash is a winner of the 2016 Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award.

Race into the future with Anki Overdrive ($149) a game that mixes the fun of video games with real-world toys. Control the rechargeable, wireless vehicles with a smartphone, battling up to three opponents, live or AI. The starter set comes with all that is needed to build eight different tracks. Jumps and supertrucks can be added for whole new ways to play.

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About James Oppenheim:
James Oppenheim, Technology Editor of JamesGames.Com, and Contributor to NBC's Today Show. He has appeared on national news broadcasts including World News Tonight, CNN, and MSNBC, and in print in Parade, Business Week, Child, and other publications. For years he has dedicated himself to find the best family friendly products and been an advocate for better software for kids. He is the founder of CPU, a computer user group dedicated to increasing computer literacy. This tour is sponsored by the manufacturers of the products. The editorial decision regarding the products selected rests solely with JamesGames.Com. For more information, please visit

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